Arsenal easily defeated Manchester City 3-0 at Wembley Stadium on Sunday, winning the Community shield in dominant fashion. The Premier League's official Twitter account shared the result:
The Gunners dominated from start to finish and deservedly went into half-time up by two goals, courtesy of Santi Cazorla and Aaron Ramsey. The Citizens tried to up the pace at the start of the second half but hardly threatened Wojciech Szczesny, and Olivier Giroud took away any doubts with another goal on the hour-mark.
City hardly fielded their strongest XI and never looked like the 2013-14 Premier League champions, but that shouldn't dampen the spirits of the Arsenal faithful. The Gunners played an excellent match, and they look ready to make a strong start to the 2014-15 Premier League season.
Piers Morgan didn't hide his excitement:
As shared by the Independent's Chris Wheatly, Arsene Wenger praised his entire team for the victory:
Wenger: "It was a united team performance. Quality, togetherness and good moment in the first half."— Chris Wheatley (@GoonerTalk) August 10, 2014
The Gunners have made a number of high-profile signings in the last two years, and Wenger believes his squad is stronger than it has been in a long time:
Wenger: "In the last two years we've added Özil and Sanchez. Of course our squad is stronger."— Chris Wheatley (@GoonerTalk) August 10, 2014
New signing Calum Chambers was immediately given the start in the heart of the defense, and the youngster put together a spirited performance against one of England's most explosive attacking units.
His performance was all the more impressive considering the fact he doesn't normally play as a centre-back, as explained by his French coach:
Wenger on Chambers: "He doesn't play at CB by coincidence. He deserves congratulations. He's never played with Monreal & was outstanding."— Chris Wheatley (@GoonerTalk) August 10, 2014
Scorer Ramsey told reporters the atmosphere among the squad was phenomenal, via Squawka:
Aaron Ramsey: "The atmosphere in the dressing room is the best it's been since I joined Arsenal. We feel we're a club on the up." #AFC— Squawka Football (@Squawka) August 10, 2014
Wenger was very happy with the win, but as reported by the club's official Twitter account, he wanted to put the match into context and focus on the upcoming Premier League campaign:
Wenger: "Today was good preparation - it was important to win today and now we focus on a very different game next week" #AFCvMCFC— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) August 10, 2014
Finally, he confirmed that while the win in itself would give his squad a confidence boost, the manner in which they dominated the defending Premier League champions was perhaps even more important to him:
Wenger: "It was important for our confidence to win the game, we also had a quality performance and that is comforting for me" #AFCvMCFC— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) August 10, 2014
With so much joy coming from the Arsenal dressing room, it was only to be expected Manuel Pellegrini's mood would be fouler. He did mince his words after the match, telling The Sun his team was "poor" and "slow:"
Pellegrini: "We were poor, especially in the first half. We were too slow. We improved after the break but Arsenal were the better team"— The Sun - Football (@TheSunFootball) August 10, 2014
Many questioned the manager's decision to start new signing Willy Caballero over Joe Hart, and the Argentine was caught woefully out of position on the third goal. Pellegrini refused to comment on who his starter would be for the season, per the Independent's Sam Wallace:
Pellegrini refusing to confirm that Joe Hart is his No 1 for this season. Says 'you will see next Sunday' who is first choice GK— Sam Wallace (@SamWallaceIndy) August 10, 2014
He was full of praise for the Gunners, and for new star attacker Alexis Sanchez in particular, according to the Daily Telegraph's Henry Winter:
As reported by Cool FM Nigeria's Okon Nya, Pellegrini called on his squad to play at their title-winning level from a year ago from the very start of the upcoming Premier League campaign:
Pellegrini: "We must demonstrate from the beginning(of the Premier League) why we won the title last year."— Okon 'Ediye' Nya (@iamOkon) August 10, 2014
The 2014-15 Premier League season will kick off on Sunday, and after having to deal with trophyless-jokes for such a long time, Gooners must be feeling good about the club winning its second piece of silverware in three months.
The Citizens were without multiple starters from last year's title-winning squad, and there is no reason to panic for a squad that is once again being tipped as favourites for the Premier League title.